15 Best Things to Do in Blaine, MN

Blaine, MN

Welcome to Blaine, nestled in the heart of Minnesota!

I've been calling this charming city my home for years now.

Its warm-hearted residents, coupled with an array of enjoyable activities, make it a wonderful place to live and visit.

Our city may not be at the top of every travel guide, but its quintessential Midwestern charm and hidden gems deserve to be shared.

So, I'm taking it upon myself to give you the inside scoop on how to make the most of your time in Blaine.

Whether you're a first-time visitor or are considering making Blaine your home, I'm sure you'll find something that will make you fall in love with this extraordinary city with this list of the best things to do in Blaine, Minnesota.

So prepare to unfold an exciting adventure in our little corner of the North Star State!

About this article: This article was written by a local contributor based on their own experiences and those around them. While this list showcases some remarkable places, it's important to note that this is an opinion piece, and there are many other exceptional places to visit that are not featured here.
Our aim is not just to guide you to popular places but to encourage you to venture out and experience the city for yourself.

Commune with Nature at Blaine Wetland Sanctuary

Trees at Blaine Wetland Sanctuary
Emily De Donato / Shutterstock.com

"Oh, the sights you'll see!" is the phrase that comes to mind every time I walk the boardwalk through the wetlands of Blaine Wetland Sanctuary.

The sanctuary is more than just a wetland; it's an impressive display of biodiversity.

Walking with my greyhounds, the path reveals pockets of woodland interspersed with diverse plants showing a stunning array of colors and textures.

As an enthusiast of bird-watching, I've had the pleasure of spotting unique bird species like indigo buntings, sedge wrens, flickers, and even the elusive dickcissel.

The sanctuary is home to these beautiful creatures, making it a bird lover's paradise.

Blaine Wetland Sanctuary isn't just a walker's paradise.

It's a great place for a leisurely scooter ride or a hike.

My little ones enjoy it just as much as I do.

A boardwalk at Blaine Wetland Sanctuary
Teresa Otto / Shutterstock.com

They love the easy hiking trail that's perfect for their little scooters.

The trail, which is roughly 1.5 miles, spans from Lexington to East Lake Park.

One of the highlights of our hikes is the boardwalk.

It's different, it's fun, and it provides excellent opportunities for spotting wildlife.

On several occasions, we've spotted deer along the trail, making the experience even more exciting.

But nothing beats the beauty of the viewpoint.

Have a Retail Therapy at Reverie Boutique & Co.

Oh, the joy of stumbling upon a hidden treasure in your own backyard!

I recently had such an experience when I walked into Reverie Boutique & Co.

I've been living in this city for years, but it almost felt like I had discovered an enchanting new world.

This quaint little boutique has quickly become my favorite shopping destination.

The moment I stepped inside, I found myself in fashion heaven.

Their collection was a perfect mix of casual and dressy attire, just what I needed to revamp my wardrobe.

The best part? They cater to all sizes, making me feel truly inclusive.

The quality of their clothes was impeccable, and the designs were gorgeous.

I ended up buying a few pieces not just for myself but also some trendy items for my tween!

But it wasn't just the clothes that made my visit worthwhile.

The service at Reverie Boutique & Co. was next level.

One of the things that made me fall in love with Reverie Boutique & Co. was that it's locally owned and operated.

In a world dominated by big brands, it's heartwarming to see a small store hold its own, offering competitive pricing and quality that's hard to beat.

It feels great to support a local business that appreciates its customers so much.

Indulge in the Taste of Greece at Jawad Grill

I thought I knew Mediterranean food until I stumbled upon Jawad Grill.

They say first impressions last - and the first bite of their creamy hummus certainly made a lasting impression.

The smooth, rich flavor was so captivating it made me reluctant to try anything else on the table.

Unlike the traditional Mediterranean eateries I was used to, Jawad Grill caught me by surprise with their cheese curds.

I found it a peculiar addition to their menu, and while they were decent, they didn't quite hit the mark compared to the rest of my meal.

However, they made up for it with the rest of the menu.

Their pita and gyros were excellent lunch options.

They were a little on the pricier side, but the generosity with their portions justified the cost.

Not every day you come across meals so filling they make you skip dinner.

Yet, the real stars of the show were their Kufta Shish Kabab, Jawad Grill Combo, Falafels, and Meat Samosas.

The flavors were spot-on, and the portions were generous enough to guarantee leftovers.

The food quality was exceptional.

Dining here felt like taking a quick trip to Greece, and that's not an experience you want to miss out on.

Jawad Grill is no fancy place.

It has the vibe of a deli, with a calm and relaxing atmosphere.

The music in the background is subtly present, never overpowering the dining experience.

It's a great spot for a quick lunch or a leisurely dinner.

Stroll the Lakeside Commons Park

Starting my day with a brisk walk around the gorgeous lake at Lakeside Commons Park is a treat for the senses.

The sun peeking out from the horizon, splashing the water with hues of gold and orange, provides a breathtaking view that's hard to beat.

The park is vast and inviting, always impeccably clean, and offers a sense of calm before the crowds start to trickle in.

While I love the solitude of the morning, the park truly comes to life as the day progresses.

It's not uncommon to see children enjoying the splash pads and playground while their parents watch from nearby picnic tables or groups of friends engaging in a lively game of volleyball.

I, myself, have enjoyed many afternoons renting a canoe and paddling out on the park's public beach.

One of my favorite features of Lakeside Commons Park is the extensive network of trails.

Whether you're a seasoned runner, an avid biker, or just someone who enjoys a leisurely stroll, these trails offer a beautiful backdrop for your exercise regime.

Plus, they're dog-friendly, so my furry friend gets to enjoy the park as much as I do!

If you're lucky, you might even snag a catch at the park's fishing spot.

It's a great way to wind down after a day of activity.

I've never seen a park that offers so much for free and yet manages to maintain such cleanliness and order.

Even the restrooms and changing rooms are spotless.

Parking has never been an issue for me, with ample spaces available.

Enjoy Japanese Cuisine at Misono Sushi & Asian Bistro

It all began when I stumbled upon a charming eatery nestled in the heart of my hometown, the Misono Sushi & Asian Bistro.

Been there a couple of times, and it has never disappointed me.

There's something magical about the vibrant yet soothing ambiance that this place has.

On one occasion, I took my granddaughter to Misono for a unique dining experience - and boy, they didn't disappoint!

She was awestruck by the exotic ocean roll, which, quite frankly, has been my favorite too.

The food is always fresh and invigorating, with an array of sushi, hibachi fare, and curries that never fail to tantalize my tastebuds.

But it's not just the food that stands out about Misono Sushi & Asian Bistro.

The restaurant is impeccably clean, parking is a breeze, and the servers are always on their toes.

As a regular visitor, I can assure you that the service is impeccable.

The best part? Misono Sushi & Asian Bistro takes customization requests!

Didn't fancy shrimp or crab in your sushi roll?

No problem - they got you covered.

I once requested a fry sushi roll without shrimp and was pleasantly surprised by their willingness to accommodate my preferences.

Now, that's what I call service.

Catch a Game at the National Sports Center

Signage of National Sports Center
Steve Skjold / Shutterstock.com

Every summer, I get the thrill of cheering on numerous soccer teams during the USA Cup at the National Sports Center.

With over 1,800 teams and 50,000 players sprawling across 62 fields, the excitement is palpable.

Not only is the competition fierce and engaging, but the facilities at the National Sports Center are also top-notch.

Parking is never an issue, there's plenty of it, and the fields are always well-maintained and ready for action.

For those who prefer the chill of ice under their skates, the center boasts eight ice rinks.

Ice rink of National Sports Center
Tony Webster from Portland, Oregon, United States, CC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

But the front four rinks offer a much better experience, both in terms of temperature and the seating available for spectators.

As for refreshments, the concession stand leaves a bit to be desired.

It's not always open, and when it is, the food is just average.

But they do offer something not many places in Minnesota do - they sell beer!

A cold one after a fierce game, whether soccer or hockey, is always a winner.

Have a Relaxing Afternoon at Aquatore Park

I go for an afternoon stroll at Aquatore Park every chance I get; it's always a treat.

The park is spacious, with sports fields, a dog park, and even picnic pavilions.

Perfect for a family day out or a solo escape in the heart of Blaine.

One of my favorite parts about the park is the Blaine festival.

The festival is a true delight, especially if you're bringing kids along.

They have a variety of rides tailored for younger children.

My kids absolutely love them.

And let me not even get started on the lemonade they serve there.

It's the best I've ever tasted! The food, however, could use some work.

The fries, fried pickles, cheese curds, and popcorn weren't really to my liking, but it's all part of the experience, right?

Beyond the festival, the playground is a constant hit with the little ones.

It's packed with everything a child could possibly want - ziplining, slides, swings; you name it!

The park is lush with trees providing ample shade, ideal for those scorching summer days.

And don't worry about facilities; there's a restroom nearby.

For those seeking a quiet getaway, the park also offers two gazebos.

One is larger and situated on the east side, and a slightly smaller one is tucked away on the west.

It's the perfect spot for a leisurely barbeque or a low-key party.

A Day at The Fun Lab

One of the highlights in our neighborhood is a place called The Fun Lab.

It's a fresh addition to our community and something that has brought life into our regular weekends.

The first time I visited, I was impressed by the variety of activities to engage in.

You can practically lose track of time exploring all that this place has to offer!

Make sure to spare around three hours of your day to fully enjoy what The Fun Lab has in store for you.

Now, let's talk food - the offerings here are not only tasty but also reasonably portioned.

It's the perfect fuel to keep you through all the fun-filled activities!

An additional treat is the arcade, a realm of digital fun that's also worth exploring if you have an extra hour to spare.

The Fun Lab isn't just for individual adventurers, though.

I had the pleasure of taking my son with me during one of my visits.

We had a fantastic time doing activities and playing games together.

Moreover, I've heard from a teacher friend that The Fun Lab is also an excellent venue for school trips.

The staff were accommodating and ensured that the students had a blast.

True enough, every child was asleep during the bus ride back to school - a sure sign of a day well spent.

Hit the Target at Metro Gun Club

I can't help but beam with pride whenever I think about Metro Gun Club.

It's one of the perks of living in the area, a terrific venue with many traps, skeet, and 4-stand fields, and even an indoor pistol range.

Nothing compares to their vast clubhouse, a mecca for relaxation and socialization with ample tables and chairs.

Not to forget the impressive picnic area marked by the largest number of grills I've ever seen in one place.

It’s become a spot for memorable barbecue parties.

I remember the thrill of trap shooting for the first time here.

My buddy Joe and I had such a fantastic experience; we’ve been regulars ever since.

Metro Gun Club also puts Bill's gun range to shame, with membership costs being less than half the price.

One of the significant perks of being a member here is the abundance of benefits.

They have trap shooting, archery, an indoor range, and a wide variety of snacks and drinks.

And when you take a break from shooting, there’s a huge indoor seating area with air conditioning, perfect for chilling out.

The parking space is always ample, leaving no worries about finding a spot for your car.

Taste the Local Brews at Invictus Brewing Company

Since I discovered Invictus Brewing Company, it's become my go-to spot for comfort food and a wide variety of craft beers.

The contemporary, industrial setting of this spot makes it the perfect place to unwind, with ample space both inside and out.

You wouldn't believe the array of delightful food options available at the Tipsy Steer.

Everything is made from scratch using locally sourced ingredients, and they even have a brick oven pizza that's to die for!

One time, my friends and I ordered the pickle pizza, which was generously topped with crispy pork belly bites.

But that's not all. We also tried the armadillo eggs - hamburger wrapped in bacon and stuffed with goat cheese, topped with raspberry jam.

I'm still dreaming about it! The Bavarian pretzels with a mouthwatering cheese sauce were the perfect side.

Invictus Brewing Company isn't just for food lovers, though.

The range of beer options is nothing short of fantastic, and there's something for everyone.

I'm not a big drinker, but I couldn't resist their beer flight, which allowed me to sample multiple types of beer.

They even cater to NA drinkers, and I must say, their ice cream malts are divine.

Another feature I love about this place is that they've made ordering super convenient.

You order your food inside but can scan a QR code to order beer right from your table.

Also, they have a couple of ciders and slushies on offer.

I happened to try the citrus and rootbeer flavor during a hot summer day, and it was just the refreshing drink I needed.

Other Things to Do Nearby

Exercise with Your Furry Buddy at Elm Creek Park Reserve - Dog Off-leash Area

Bridge at Elm Creek Park Reserve
melissamn / Shutterstock.com

My four-legged buddy, Max, and I are regular visitors of the Elm Creek Park Reserve - Dog Off-leash Area.

I remember my first visit to this park like it was yesterday.

I stood at the gate, chuckling to myself over the silly struggle of figuring out how to open it.

Once I was in, though, I was immediately taken aback by the assortment of trees providing a welcome shade throughout the park.

One of the features that Max got super excited about was the dog pond, perfectly gated off to keep the playful doggos contained as they splashed around.

I could see the spark in Max's eyes as he chased his new friends in and out of the water, his tail wagging with pure joy.

The park exudes friendliness; you can tell by the way the dogs all interact.

Max has made lots of friends here, and so have I.

The waters of Elm Creek Park Reserve
melissamn / Shutterstock.com

It's a great place to socialize, both for dogs and their humans!

The vast space is perfect for the dogs to roam around, explore, and burn off their boundless energy.

Elm Creek Park Reserve - Dog Off-leash Area has become a favorite spot for me and Max.

I enjoy the peaceful sounds of running water by the entrance, and Max can't get enough of the pond.

He jumps in with gusto every time we visit, a sight that never fails to amuse me.

This park truly is a puppy paradise!

Pierre Bottineau house at Elm Creek Park Reserve
melissamn / Shutterstock.com

Catch an Event at the Heritage Center of Brooklyn Center

Let me tell you about an unforgettable event I once attended at the Heritage Center of Brooklyn Center.

Even before stepping inside, the center's charming character was captivating.

It's not every day you come across such a fascinating venue that strikes a perfect balance between being interesting and not too overbearing.

The place is quite expansive, with multiple rooms set up with partitions.

I remember being at a presentation in the Harvest room, where a little sound from the next room seeped in.

But it wasn't too distracting, only adding to the lively ambiance of the place.

The venue does lack a sizable space for a buffet line, especially when all rooms are occupied. So, if you are planning a large event, make sure you have your queueing strategy sorted.

But what surprised me the most was the quality of the food they served.

It was simply amazing!

The friendly and helpful staff ensured our plates were never empty and our glasses were always full.

Their location is pretty convenient, too, although finding the right door in their sprawling parking lot can be a bit tricky during your initial visits.

But don't worry; follow the signs, and you'll get there.

Heritage Center of Brooklyn Center is also attached to the Embassy Suites, making it incredibly convenient for attendees who prefer staying overnight.

It is a versatile venue, capable of catering to any size gathering - be it an intimate wedding reception or a colossal convention.

And you know what's the best part?

They offer excellent catering services, so you don't have to worry about the food at all.

It's definitely a place worth checking out if you're planning any event.

Have a Family Day at the Shoreview Community Center

I've been living in Shoreview for years, and I must say the Shoreview Community Center is the heart of our community.

From tropical-themed water parks to basketball courts and playgrounds – it's got something for everyone.

My two boys, aged 10 and 6, are particularly thrilled every time we spend an afternoon there.

The first time we visited, we were pleasantly surprised to learn that a single payment covers access to all attractions.

With this, we were able to hop from one activity to another without worrying about additional costs.

My boys started with an hour at the indoor playground, followed by swimming and basketball.

The center also offers free lockers near the check-in desk where you can store your belongings, like phones and wallets.

Bigger lockers are also available if you bring your lock.

They even have a fantastic outdoor park and a skateboard park for outdoor enthusiasts.

Keeping everyone fueled throughout the day is no trouble at all - the center offers a variety of food options.

From pizza to pulled pork sandwiches, hot dogs, cheeseburgers, and chicken strips, every craving is satisfied at Shoreview Community Center.

They even have a wide variety of snacks like cookies, muffins, and beef sticks, all reasonably priced.

Our community center is not just for kids; teenagers and adults can find something to enjoy as well.

With its large indoor playground and fantastic water park, even my 15-year-old occasionally tags along with his younger siblings.

There are still many more places within this complex that my family and I are yet to explore, but I am confident we will get a lot of value out of each visit.

Have a Fun-Filled Learning at Bell Museum

Exterior of the Bell Museum
August Schwerdfeger, CC BY 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Every now and then, I find myself yearning for a bit of wanderlust right in my own backyard, so I head over to the Bell Museum.

Located in our city, the Bell Museum is a treasure trove of knowledge, experiences, and fun!

What I love about it is the wide range of diverse animal dioramas that gives me a glimpse into the wild and natural world that lies outside the urban jungle.

The planetarium has quickly become my favorite spot, as it allows me to journey through the cosmos without leaving the ground.

On my visits, I often find myself surrounded by energetic school kids exploring the 'See and Touch' lab.

It’s heartening to see them engrossed in learning while having fun.

And let’s not forget the space and life exhibits!

They are as interactive as they are informative.

Exhibit in Bell Museum
Runner1928, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Even for an adult, it's an enlightening experience.

But the best part? The parking!

With on-site parking for a mere $2, the Bell Museum makes it a hassle-free experience.

I usually prefer coming on a Thursday afternoon as it provides ample time to get around without the morning rush.

Last but not least, the Omni Theater show is the cherry on top. I

It's a fun 2-hour escape that brings a wide smile to faces, regardless of age.

My nieces and nephews, aged 8, 10, and 12, always leave the museum eager for their next visit.

Every visit to the Bell Museum leaves me with a newfound appreciation for the world around me.

And as I step back into reality, I find myself looking forward to the next adventure at the museum.

Fossil in Bell Museum
Runner1928, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Discovering Serenity at Harriet Alexander Nature Center

Every morning, I kick off my day with an invigorating stroll through the lush pathways of the Harriet Alexander Nature Center.

This Roseville gem, brimming with vibrant greenery, chirping birds, and playful ducks, is my sanctuary from the daily hustle, where I can immerse myself in nature's beauty.

Throughout the year, the center is graced with blooms of different varieties, each season creating a unique spectacle.

The lilac season, in particular, is a sight to behold. I often find myself taking leisurely walks amongst the lilacs, their sweet scent filling the air and their vibrant colors providing the perfect backdrop for family photos or quiet contemplation.

Harriet Alexander Nature Center also boasts a well-maintained boardwalk, where I often lose track of time soaking up the serenity.

The health and vitality of the plants are a testament to the dedication of the volunteers, who tirelessly ensure that this piece of paradise remains pristine.

Recently, I had the opportunity to attend a maple sap/maple syrup demonstration at the center.

It was a delightful, educational afternoon filled with fun activities for kids.

The experience was not just informative but also underscored the importance of nature and its bounty.

I’m already looking forward to attending more of these engaging events in the future.

Final Thoughts

I can confidently say that the city of Blaine is packed with a plethora of engaging attractions that cater to a wide variety of interests.

From the natural beauty of the Blaine Wetland Sanctuary and Lakeside Commons Park to the excitement of the National Sports Center and Metro Gun Club, there's something for everyone.

Whether you're a nature lover, a sports enthusiast, a foodie, or a beer aficionado, the best things to do in Blaine, Minnesota, have you covered.

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